Total reverse mortgage endorsements grew 19.7% in January compared to the previous month, an increase powered mostly by wholesale volume growth, according to the latest data from Reverse Market Insight.
Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) wholesale volume was up 39% in January, while retail endorsements grew 7.5% from December.
“We wrote in a previous report of our surprise at January’s 19.7% increase in HECM endorsements, now we know that it was primarily wholesale channel loans powering that surge,” noted RMI in its January HECM Originators report.
January’s wholesale growth could be due, in part, to brokers being quick to take advantage of marketing opportunities in response to the recent HECM program changes like PLF reductions and utilization restrictions, said RMI President John Lunde in an email to RMD.
“They likely had a disproportionate share of volume in case numbers ahead of the 9/30 cutoff, which led to more fundings in Q4 and now more endorsements in January,” Lunde said.
January also exhibited considerable activity among the top 10 lenders.
Security One/RMS jumped 43.7% to 1,145 loans during the month, which RMI noted as the first time since August where any lender has posted more than 1,000 loans.
Urban Financial also saw considerable growth in its retail and wholesale volume channels for the month, rising 70% in January for its highest monthly total since July.
Generation nearly doubled its volume, which grew 97.4% during the month—also its highest since July.
The RMI HECM Originators report also ranks the top 100 HECM lenders by volume channel for the last 12 months through January 2014.
Written by Jason Oliva